Sabitra Bhandari "Samba" signed by Hapoel Raanana AFC | Israel Women's League 2022/23

Nepali national women's football team forward and goal machine Sabitra Bhandari Samba is now going to play European football. 27-year-old Sabitra has been signed by Israeli club Hapoel Ra'ana Women's Football Club. Raana, who climbed to the top division of Israel for the first time, signed Sabitra for the Israel Premier League of the 2023/24 season.

On Tuesday, Hapoel Ra'ana shared a picture and a video and said that they have been watching Samba for a long time. It can be understood that Samba came to Ra'ana's attention after she single-handedly brought the Nepali women's team to a 2-2 position after trailing 2-0 in the first friendly match against India last February. 

Samba, who continues to be the leading scorer of Nepali women's football, has been busy in professional football in South Asia for the past few years. In which she has proved herself in the leagues from Maldives to India.

With her very amazing ability, Sabitra has lifted the Indian top division Hero Women's I league 3 times. In the 2022/23 season she scored a miraculous 29 goals in throughout the competition for Gokulam Kerala and helped her club win the title for the second time.

Common football fans wanted to see Samba, who has been ruling the South Asian football, in European football. Which has now been completed. Sabitra is the first and only female football player from Nepal to be signed by such a big European club. 

Although geographically on the Asian continent, Israel is a member of UEFA, the European football confederation. If Samba's contracted Israeli club Hapoel  performs well in European club football in the coming days, the club will be able to travel to play UEFA Women's Champions League.

Sabitra said that she was very happy and excited to join the Israeli club as she had dreamed of playing European club football for a long time. Sabitra's trip to Europe has also opened doors of opportunity for other Nepali women football players like Saru Limbu, Renuka Nagarkote, Rekha Paudel, Anita Basnet, Priti Rai and others.

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